Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Gone too long

I didn't plan on being away from my blog for this long, but life called and it's taken me awhile to get back in the swing of things. It's been a very long hot summer here at the foot of Pikes Peak. Living in the mountains we always worry about the possibility of a major wildfire. Those fears materialized with the devastating Waldo Canyon Fire at the end of June. 346 homes were destroyed and 2 people died and what was already a poor economy became a lot worse when our usual throng of summer tourist decided to go elsewhere.

Since the fire there's been a noticeable uneasiness in people as we all try to get back into a routine. The only thing that has kept me sane has been having a creative outlet. I decided to take the making lemonade out of lemons approach, and used all the scrub oak people have cleared away from their homes in my neighborhood  for ecoprinting and dyeing. Scrub oak gives a nice warm brown dye, very similar to tea, but without having to waste any tea. Our trees having been dropping leaves since early August, so I have a good collection of aspen, cottonwood and fruit tree leaves for printing. I have noticed that I haven't gotten strong prints like I did last summer (maybe because the trees are stressed), but with the help of copper pipes and iron bits I am still happy with my results.

The journal is made from a vintage apron that I dyed with an oak bath.


  1. hopefully fall will bring more sure-footedness. i haven't ventured into leaf printing or eco-dyeing. is that silk in the top photo or cotton?

  2. Thinking, mulling on your bitter-sweet post. The leaf-dyed fabric is beautiful. I may just have to learn some of this...I have aspen, willow and Manitoba maple to play with...

  3. It will probably take some time for the uneasiness to go after..but it is good to read what you are doing with the scrub oak; I like the idea of athe lemons from lemonade approach..and always like seeing , as a new eco-printer, the work of others.

  4. Thanks for the comments everyone. Yes, Glennis it is silk in the top photo.